Project Details Development of a Multilingual Encyclopaedia of Polymer Terminology

Project No.:
Start Date:
30 August 2007
End Date:
09 May 2018
Division Name:


Fostering world-wide communications in all areas of Chemistry has been a long established goal of IUPAC activities since it was founded. This project is aimed at proposing a web-based and user-friendly encyclopedia of polymer terms and definitions translated into several languages. An online accessible dictionary is to be built by combining translations of terms of polymer science and their definitions.


This Multilingual Encyclopaedia will have the Glossary of Basic Terms in Polymer Science as the starting point, and its available translations will be used to edit an internet based dictionary. Once it is loaded to IUPAC website, the user will be able not only to look up any term and definition in English but also its translation into the available languages. Basic terms and definitions in languages other than English should be those recognized by the relevant National Adhering Organisations (NAO).

It is clear that this project will rely heavily on collaboration from nationals of non-English speaking countries. Given the dimension of the project, languages that use occidental characters will be chosen first (French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, German; Dutch, Czech, Polish, etc); later, languages with more distinct characters (such as Chinese, Japanese, Russian, Korean, Greek, Thai, Arabic, etc.) will be incorporated. Every attempt will be made to seek the co-operation, involvement and support of the relevant NAOs. It is expected that this electronic dictionary will be flexible enough that up-dating as well as addition of further terms can be made straightforwardly, since all data will be based exclusively on IUPAC documents that have already been approved.

This is an electronic project, but in volume goes well beyond that of a normal terminology project. There are examples of multilingual dictionaries, both printed and electronic, from other organizations such as the one sponsored by ISO, but this would be the first one directed entirely to the Polymer Chemistry community, making the sponsorship of IUPAC so important.


The key outcome of this project is complete and currently available at <>.

To secure long-term accessibility, the task group is working towards the integration of the content into <>, a website curated by the Subcommittee on Polymer Education.



Any suggestions/ideas for further development shall be addressed to Claudio dos Santos.

Project completed

Page last update 9 May 2018